2 Feb 2015

Stags beat Aces for Ford Trophy

6:26 am on 2 February 2015

The Central Districts cricketers have beaten Auckland by 78 runs to win the domestic one day final at Colin Maiden Park in Auckland.

Bevan Small at the crease for Central at Colin Maiden Park

Bevan Small at the crease for Central at Colin Maiden Park Photo: Photosport

The Stags were in trouble early with the retiring Jamie How going for a golden duck, and season top scorer George Worker making just two.

Will Young (45), skipper Kruger van Wyk (53) and Dane Cleaver (51) were able to consolidate and resurrect the innings before Doug Bracewell (24 from 18) and Bevan Small (29 from 12) got the Stags to 271-7 in their 50 overs.

The Aces' Donovan Grobbelaar took 2-38 from his ten overs, but Matt Quinn (2-78) and Michael Bates (2-65) were smashed around in the latter stages.

In reply, the Auckland opener Brad Cachopa got 40 at quicker then a run a ball, but regular wickets fell as the Stags attack turned the screws.

Bracewell (2-29), Small (3-40) and the season's top wicket taker Andrew Mathieson (4-22) did the damage, backed up by near-flawless fielding.

Marty Kain's athletic over-the-head leaping catch to remove Colin de Grandhomme for just 13 when he was looking dangerous typified the effort and was a pivotal moment in the match.

The run rate required was over six an over early and the result felt inevitable as wickets kept tumbling.

Bracewell removed Quinn to end the match in the 39th over to spark celebrations from the Stags, who deserved to win the title after their dominant season.

It was also a fitting send off to Jamie How, who will now retire from all cricket.

Andrew Mathieson's four wickets in the match took him past Graeme Aldridge's record for most wickets in a New Zealand 50-over season.

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